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Legacy of Ykesha Storyline

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2003 3:19 am    Post subject: Legacy of Ykesha Storyline     Reply with quote

The Prophecy of Gromzok

In the Elder Age the trolls followed one god: Cazic Thule, their creator. They grew and evolved under his guidance, and the blood of Fear beat strong through their hearts. The unity of the trolls was broken when Innoruuk, the Prince of Hate, touched a young troll mystic named Zraxth.

Zraxth's deviation from the followers of Cazic Thule was small at first. He would gather small groups of other mystics in secluded camps far away from the troll cities. There they would perform ceremonies to channel their hatred, and through it give power to the trolls who were being oppressed by the dominant forces of the Rallosian armies. Hatred drove the trolls, making them more bloodthirsty and savage, but their might was still not enough to confront the will of the Ogre Empire that dominated Southern Tunaria. Zraxth saw that his efforts were futile, and asked his new lord, Innoruuk, when the trolls would see the power they were promised. The knowledge he sought came with a price; Innoruuk demanded a blood tithe in exchange for a vision. Zraxth was instructed to slay the high priests of Cazic Thule so their blood could be used to grant him foresight.

Zraxth and his followers did as the Prince of Hate demanded. Cloaked by the night, he and his disciples crept into the camps of their brethren and killed every elder priest to yield the blood to be used in the rite. The blood of their kin on their hands, Zraxth and his disciples set about performing the rituals described in Innoruuk's instructions. A great stone tablet was brought before Zraxth, and the ceremony began. Zraxth meditated for days without sleep or food, trying to transcend his mortal mind and see what Innoruuk had promised him.

On the eighth day, Zraxth spoke. The disciples tried in vain to record his words but found that no ink would hold them; the words ran like quicksilver off their parchments.. Zraxth, still in a deep trance, took the stone and began to record his words with the elder's blood and a chisel made from their bones. As he laid each symbol into the stone, it blazed with dark flames and then settled. As the stone cooled, the disciples saw that the words appeared as though they had always been a part of the stone, rather than carved and painted into it.

Zraxth's visions foretold the coming of the Grozmok. The Grozmok would be the greatest of all trolls and would unite the troll clans through Fear and Hate. Through his knowledge of war and magic he would topple the empires in Tunaria. The stone would be the symbol of his power. No true Grozmok would rise without the stone, but many false Grozmoks would die because of it. This was the prophecy, the curse and the legacy of Grozmok.

The ceremony killed Zraxth. His body was burned, and his ashes were scattered. His disciples returned to their tribes, each assuming their old positions among the mystics, teaching their people of the prophecy of Grozmok. Zraxth's first disciple was given the stone, as his tribe was the strongest and most likely to give rise to the Grozmok. They protected the stone and its secrets for many generations, until whispers of the prophecy spread to the Rallosian Empire.

The ogres did not fear the trolls; however, they did fear the power that the stone might grant them. To stifle any hope that the stone may have provided, they raided the home of the tribe that held the stone. After slaughtering all who lived there, they returned the stone to their vaults, attempting to end the prophecy and any power that may have been drawn from it.

The stone remained in the fortified strongholds of the Ogre Empire until the curse of the Pantheon struck the minions of Zek down for their hubris. The fall of the empire created a void of power in Southern Tunaria. The two largest troll factions, Clan Broken Skull and Clan Ykesha, began to battle for rule over the once conquered lands. As their war raged, knowledge of the stone faded from the trolls' minds. It lay forgotten, until marauders from Clan Ykesha found the stone hidden in the vaults of a decimated ogre fortress. The lore and memory of the stone's true meaning had been long lost to the trolls; still they recognized the stone as an artifact from their ancient history, and presented it as a tribute to their clan leader, Warlord Ykesha.

The ancients of Clan Ykesha eventually managed to translate the writing on the stone; this revealed the lost prophecy of the Grozmok to them. Warlord Ykesha took his capturing of the stone to mean that he was destined to be the Grozmok. Rumors of the stone spread throughout the Clans. Meanwhile, the power of Clan Ykesha grew as other tribes joined them to fight for the Grozmok.

Innoruuk, seeing the hate among his children fade as more and more joined Ykesha, planted seeds of doubt in the Warlord's mind. Ykesha grew reclusive, moving deep within his compound to protect himself from attempts to usurp his power. This growing insanity weakened him. As dissention grew within Clan Ykesha, other clans grew bold and struck the might of the Ykesha. It was Clan Broken Skull that managed to finally overthrow Ykesha and lay claim to the stone.

The remnants of the Ykeshan clan regrouped slowly, rising under the might of Warlord Jurgash, and formed Clan Grobb. The new clan grew under the direction of Ykesha's descendent, while the stone remained hidden on Broken Skull Rock. Innoruuk, again seeing the hate among the trolls settling, granted one of Grobb's mystics a vision that revealed the location of the Grozmok stone. Clan Grobb invaded Broken Skull Rock and recovered the stone. The victorious clan returned the stone to Southern Tunaria.

Today, the Grozmok stone rests hidden and well protected deep within Grobb. Knowledge of the stone and the prophecy it contains has once again begun to fade as new generations pursue their own dreams of power. The young consider the old stories of the stone and the first great warlord, who rests in his fortress now swallowed by the swamp, to be campfire myths. Yet, many of the clan elders wait with the hopes that one day the Grozmok will rise from their ranks and fulfill the legacy of Ykesha.

Narya Dragynsfyre
Warrior of the 40th Circle
Follower of Mithaniel Marr
Narya's Closet
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2003 3:20 am    Post subject:      Reply with quote

The Stone is stolen

An unnatural fog fills the small cove. It brings with it a numbing quiet, which is only broken by the rhythmic sound of waves washing against the shore and slapping the hulls of several small wooden skiffs. The cove is devoid of life, since most of its typical residents have moved aside to make room for the chilling fog. The morning sun will eventually rise, and the cove's residents will return to their swampy homes. Yet, these things will all wait until the fog has receded to the ocean, carrying its dark cargo with it.

For now, the fog continues to creep up the shore and into the marshlands that lay beyond. The small cove fills with dozens of wooden skiffs. The small boats seem to cut through the water in almost perfect silence, relying only on magic to propel them ashore. A single figure in each rises and pulls its dark hood over its smooth, finned head. One motions toward the dense swamplands to the east. The strange figures seem even more out of place silhouetted against their bulkier, less agile troll allies; yet their authority is unquestioned.

The trolls push quickly through the low tangles of the swamp, their savage strength easily clearing a path. It has been some time since they moved through terrain such as this. Their clan has long avoided this place, but today's activities should remove those old fears. Once they have acquired the stone, the tides will quickly bring a new era with them from Broken Skull Rock.

As the groups reach a clearing near the city of Grobb, they are brought to a sudden halt by the figures that lead them. The robed creatures gather near a small pool. A grotesque webbed hand draws back the robe's hood, revealing the amphibian's face.

"Prepare your soldiers," the strange amphibian says softly, addressing the trolls in their guttural native language. "The doorway we create will not last long and we must have time to follow you in... unless you wish for us to leave you inside with them." The creature pauses, a slight smirk appearing on its face. "This is not your desire, correct?" A defiant grunt is its only answer.

The largest of the trolls turns to face his soldiers as the robed luggalds begin their incantation. All around them, the ankle-deep water comes alive with energy. A small growl surges from within the ranks of the luggalds to become a cacophony of battle cries. The water before the sorcerers rises in a tall, thin sheet. Through the portal can be seen a large wooden bridge, the surprised faces of several guards and, just behind them, a sign that reads: Night Keep.

As the last of the invaders climb out of the moat, which acted as their entrance into Grobb's fortified walls, the raid's leader shouts, "We only leave when we have the stone! Once you have it, burn everything else!" This command echoes through Night Keep's halls, barely audible over the crushing sounds of combat and the surprised cries of unsuspecting guards.

The trolls' cruel nature is apparent as both sides of the battle paint the scene in the savage reds of death and flames. The trolls of Grobb, now fully aware that the unthinkable is in progress, drive the invading clan back to the moat. The clan from Broken Skull Rock, however, has what it came for, and its members fight their way into a position surrounding the crimson moat. From within the cramped formation the murmurs of despicable incantations begin again.

"Your lives, for the fulfillment of prophecy," a voice shouts from within the dense circle of raiders. A shimmering red portal rises from the moat below, engulfing the Trolls and their foul mentors. Those Broken Skull trolls left behind perform their task well and thwart any disruption to the clan's escape. Even as the portal collapses back into the moat, the thieves are well on their way back into the fog that surrounds the cove.

The morning sun is now rising, finding the wind pushing a strange fog and several large ships to the west. This same wind carries a cargo of smoke and confusion through the swamplands of Innothule. The fires in Grobb are extinguished, and the descendants of Ykesha prepare for war.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2003 3:22 am    Post subject:      Reply with quote

Mithaniel Marr's Blessing

The trolls are clumsier than usual, their hurried movements carrying them between Grobb and the seashore. They pour forth from their city's walls, distractedly searching, almost as if it were all in vain. Knowing that what they seek is beyond their immediate grasp, they continue to act out the role in an effort to pass the time. The curious frogloks are uncertain about the nature of the trolls' loss, but they understand that they are certainly no longer a priority.

Deep within the damp walls that lie beneath the swamp, a mail-clad amphibian stands within the semicircular gaze of the council. He speaks in the tongue of his people, confident and proud, yet devoid of emotion. "We watched them as you requested. It is confirmed. They have sent their soldiers to the sea. The crusaders have left their home. Only a small force remains to defend it. All that you have sent us to observe has occurred. We have nothing else to report."

The elder frogloks nod and the scout quietly leaves the chamber. Silence lingers in the room as they all think about the inevitable future they share. Their wait is coming to an end. Again they will stand before their champion in prayer. Only this time it will be to confirm their destiny as a people. The elders move in silent preparation and in unison they begin their prayer, "Lord Ralthazor, Champion of Marr, Herald of Prophecy, hear us as we are prepared...."

The soft echoes of activity fill the halls with an energy that agitates the stagnant air. There is movement in every corridor, as bodies pour towards the epicenter of their fate. Tonight is like no other they can remember. An assembly of all of the castes is unheard of in their society, and perhaps the elders had this in mind when they announced it. There may be some logic in shaking things up prior to an even greater upheaval.

As the room falls into silence, the elders from each caste rise before the crowd. The room seems to dim as they begin to tell the story of their people. Their history spreads out before them. The story and the visions it conjures dance above the crowd. The elders speak for hours as the decades move across the walls of the great hall. The massive gathering begins to understand; this must be what it is like for a stone to watch life travel by. The understanding that stems from the elders' words begins to speak to the crowd and the elders move aside, as the pale flames of purity rise and begin to illuminate the room.

The white and blue flames dance along the walls A voice fills the minds of the individuals that make up the crowd.

"Do not fear these flames, for they are the sanctuary that will protect you from the darkness. Your task will be to wait on the edge of destiny, peering into the darkness in search of a light. This light, the light of destiny, already shines within this room. It radiates from within your ranks."

While the bulk of the crowd stares, mesmerized by the movement of the flames, several of the listeners begin to make out an image. It steps out of the flames and speaks only to them.

"There are some among you that see my true form. You see me for you are the chosen. I speak to you, because you have found true understanding of yourselves. It is only through that understanding that you may march forward and dispel the dark grasp of fate. You shall carry with you the destiny of your people and act as beacons for those who will wait, safe from the hate and fear that surround you. You will be the lance of valor that pierces the heart of those seeking to oppress your people. You are the seeds of a new age."

These words follow the chosen frogloks as they make their way to their quarters. Unable to sleep, they find themselves thinking of Grobb and the trolls that reside there. Images of battle begin to fill their minds. Feeling drawn by the night, many of the witnesses to tonight's activities leave their quarters and begin to filter towards the cool comfort of the swamp. Perhaps they will find peace there or at least some sign of what they should do next.
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